MX23RW : Friday, January 18 18:42:39

Danny Cowley: Elite Performance Centre can help Lincoln's promotion push

The Imps have reinvested prize money from their historic FA Cup run into building a new training centre.

Lincoln boss Danny Cowley thinks the club's new state-of-the-art training facility could give them the edge this season in the race for promotion from League Two.

The Elite Performance Centre, which will become the training home to Lincoln's first-team squad, cost £1.3million to build and was paid for by prize money and gate receipts from the club's historic run to the FA Cup quarter-finals during the 2016/17 campaign.

The Imps, then a non-league club, reached the last eight of the competition, knocking out Ipswich, Brighton and Burnley along the way before finally succumbing to Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium.

Lincoln are now currently top of League Two and Cowley thinks the facility can only provide them with an advantage going forward, as the club targets a second promotion in three years.

"In the first two seasons we were working between an army barracks and a school playing field, so it's going to give us huge benefits, and our academy is only a stone's throw away now too," Cowley told Press Association Sport.

"The difference between success and failure is small margins, so you're always looking for ways to get the right side of those small margins – we call them one percenter's. When we are in properly and up and running then we see it as being a real advantage.

"It will allow us to develop players individually and collectively and help with recruitment, as players who maybe weren't available to us when we didn't have a training ground maybe will be now."

The facility, which is set to be fully operational before the end of month, includes three elite grass football pitches, a fully equipped gym, changing rooms and new staff offices. The training ground features two specialist television towers that will enable Lincoln's technical staff to film and analyse training in real-time.

"Our mantra is about trying to provide the players with the best possible chance to play at their best and these facilities will only enhance that," said Cowley.

"We do lots of video analysis and film every training session and now we can get up really high to a high vantage point. That's important to us as we learn lots from doing that."

Lincoln will attempt to embark on another FA Cup run on Saturday when they host League Two rivals Northampton.

Cowley said: "The facility shows what an impact prize money can have, it is a legacy and creates a platform for the club to push on to future successes.

"We love playing at Sincil Bank and we love the FA Cup, so here's hoping we can have some more success in the competition."


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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Lincoln City26157447262152
2Bury28147753322149
3Mansfield TownMansfield271212338201848
4MK Dons26138544232147
5Colchester UnitedColchester28137842301246
6Carlisle UnitedCarlisle281431145351045
7Forest Green RoversForest Green261111439251444
8Exeter CityExeter27128738281044
9Tranmere RoversTranmere2711974133842
10Stevenage28125113335-241
11Oldham AthleticOldham2710984033739
12Swindon TownSwindon2891093137-637
13Newport CountyNewport26106103745-836
14Crewe AlexandraCrewe28105133036-635
15Grimsby Town27104132934-534
16Northampton TownNorthampton2771283535033
17Crawley TownCrawley28103153441-733
18Cheltenham TownCheltenham2778123241-929
19Port Vale2778122636-1029
20Cambridge UnitedCambridge2885152547-2229
21Morecambe2877142844-1628
22Yeovil TownYeovil2669112832-427
23Macclesfield TownMacclesfield2866162544-1924
24Notts County2849152957-2821

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